UC Santa Cruz used their depth and fierce serving to win their first two matches of the season at the 2019 Slugfest.
In their opener, the Slugs twice rallied from set point to sweep Franklin College (27-25, 26-24, 25-19). In the second set, UCSC trailed as much as six points at 17-11 and were down 24-21 before running off the last five points behind three kills from Claire Okerlund, an ace from Gio Martins and an Okerlund block to go up 2-0. The third set was all UCSC as the Slugs never trailed and won the match on an Okerlund kill. Okerlund had 10 kills to lead UCSC and the Slugs served seven aces to the Grizzlies' four. Martins had three aces. Freshman Sinead Beaupain had 21 assists in her college debut.
The nightcap was less of a grind as UCSC outhit Husson .400 to .055 to sweep the Eagles 25-11, 25-16, 25-7. UCSC had 12 aces to Husson's none, with Timolin Kepon serving five. Maiya Sears had a career-high 15 kills to pace UCSC offensively.
The Banana Slugs play Bard College at noon Sunday and Husson again at 5pm to close the two-day event hosted by Kaiser Permanente Arena.